Do LA Lakers Need a 2013 NBA Title to Meet Expectations?

Few people felt the Los Angeles Lakers would spend the last portion of the 2012-13 NBA season competing desperately for a playoff spot. Even fewer people felt that success in the struggle would be rewarded with the eighth seed in the Western Conference.

It's been a while since the Lakers entered the NBA postseason seeded lower than third, which makes it unimaginable to think the Lakers could end this regular season as spectators.

The Lakers are already failures in most viewers' eyes because they could very well be the first team in NBA history to fail to qualify for the playoffs with four future Hall of Famers in the starting lineup

And honestly, how much satisfaction can really be had if the Lakers narrowly qualify for the playoffs?

Simply qualifying for the playoffs might be sufficient if Stephen Curry is your point guard, but fans in the land of Magic, Kareem, Shaq and Kobe expect a little more.

Under normal circumstances, any team with Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant, Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol would be expected to contend for an NBA title. But reality often scoffs at the ruminations of man.

Injuries, bad chemistry, inconsistent defense and poor coaching have all contributed to the Lakers' paltry 39-36 record, but an upset win over San Antonio or Oklahoma City in the first round would wipe the slate clean.

Good luck with that.

The Lakers have shown little to prove they can beat the Spurs or Thunder in a seven-game series, and even if they do, so what?

This Lakers team might have the most talented starting five in the NBA even without Metta World Peace, but if you can manage to limit Kobe, the 2013 version of LeBron James could almost beat these Lakers by himself.

The Lakers simply don't have enough defensive intensity and focus to deny the Miami Heat their second consecutive NBA championship and third since 200...

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